How to start a painting

Working my way through the list from several months ago, I have been forced to tackle number 13: How to make a decision on what to paint. Turns out, this really ties into my artist statement, something I have painstakingly been trying to put into words for the last week. This seems to be the season for Call for Submissions so the time was right to update my thoughts and motivations for starting a painting. After bouncing some thoughts off of other artists I genuinely admire and respect, I have finally come up with something that feels true to my thinking. Even though it is on my Artist Statement page, I want to duplicate it here and give encourage people to ask me questions directly.

So here it is, my updated artist stament:

A painting for me starts with a call from an external stimuli, something that sparks an emotional response within me, something I perceive as beautiful. It can be as simple as shapes created between stagnant objects on a table, or the stems of flowers gently resting upon a rigid surface. It could be the seductive space between the arm of a chair and the legs of a model or perhaps, the brightly lit depth that lies beneath a table.

My paintings start with a sense of urgency, a untamed desire to capture this fleeting beauty. I work quickly, boldly, attacking the surface with energetic and lively brush strokes. Sometimes the painting unfolds rather quickly, and I am able to capture the moment of simple beauty. Other times the painting evolves through layers of seeking and meandering, getting lost and reacting to what the painting now tells me. It is through this spontaneous conversation, the painting moves beyond the resemblance of the initial objects to one that embodies the optimism, the hope, the beauty I set out to discover and capture from that initial spark.

Again, I welcome questions or comments. And should you just want me to know you enjoyed this post, you know what to do!